Ladies of London! Have you heard about the Sh! Women’s Erotic Emporium yet? If not, where the devil have you been hiding? In the days before the opening of this delightful den dedicated to female sexual pleasure, adult shops were either men only affairs (dark, seedy and full of nasty graphic gadgets and magazines), or cheap ‘n’ cheerful with tacky hen-party stock. Sh! was the first boutique-style erotic shop in the country and remains the only one that is 100% female owned and run. Bringing pleasure to the women of east London since 1992, Sh! spread its wings and opened a second branch on Portobello Road in the summer of 2010. So, if you live in west London, there’s really no excuse not to pay them a visit.
Sh! was founded with the aim of offering women and couples a welcoming safe place in which to buy quality erotic products. They provide receive good honest advice along with top service and a cuppa whilst you browse. To ensure the female-friendly environment for which they are well known, men are asked to visit accompanied by a woman or during “Gents Nite”, which is held every Tuesday evening in both stores. Sh! sell everything from organic massage oils, candles, games and lubricants, to more rather more racy items. However, as they aim to offer a more discerning range of boudoir products, even the most hardcore of the toys they sell are stylish, sensual and distinctly non-offensive.
One wall of the Portobello store is devoted to quality lingerie from the likes of Playful Promises and Vollers, whilst another area is devoted to books which cover all aspects of women’s sexuality, health and erotic fiction. There’s even a suede lounge-chair for really decadent browsing! Central to the west London shop are the “playthings that purr”, a collection tasteful vibrators with prices to suit everyone. Each is has a fully charged display model and playing with them is actively encouraged. If you need help deciding, the friendly Sh! Girlz know all there is to know about the stock so don’t be afraid to ask.
One of the things I like most about Sh! is that the core of their ethos is education. They want women to feel able to explore their sexuality freely and with the appropriate knowledge. To help you, each product in store is displayed with a “toy tag” which provides useful information such as what the toy is designed for, what it’s made of, sound/intensity levels, battery requirements etc. In addition to this, the terribly tactful Sh Girlz are trained to guide even the most nervous shopper with sensitivity, personalised advice and honest recommendations. Plus… I haven’t even mentioned their wonderful classes yet! I’m attending one of these this Wednesday, so will save that delicious detail for another post.
In the meantime, I’m sure you’ll be delighted to hear that the lovely ladies at Sh! have offered one of their goodie bags – including a Sh! Bullet, Sh! LurveHeart, Lush Touch Massage Oil, Lush Lube 250ml and Lush Refresh Toy Cleaner – to one lucky Rarely Wears Lipstick reader. To be in with a chance of winning, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post telling me who you would like to visit the Sh! Portobello store with, and why. It can be someone real or fictional, a lover, friend, celebrity or historical figure… use your imagination! You have until 5.30pm on Friday, when I shall pass the stories on to my deliciously saucy competition judge who will pick a winner. Don’t forget to make sure you leave an email address so that I can get in touch to tell you if you’ve won. Good luck!